I don't have pictures of my latest adventure, but I do have stories. And they involve lots of trains.
Now being here in America, I had one mission (among many) that I needed to fulfill. I had to complete the task of watching at least one (or a few) of my favourite Christian bands live in concert. I just had to. Not many of them come to Malaysia and so I had to take this opportunity to go see them live. And so, when the Rock And Worship Roadshow came to town, I had to go. 10 dollars for 5 major bands? A steal.
Now if you're not familiar with my personal travel adventure persistence - actually how could you since most of the time I explore the world on my own anyways - I'm the kind of person who will go anywhere by any means. I will go onto google maps and find out my location and then proceed to plan my route and execute it. So this time around, I found my location - Long Beach Arena - found the nearest train station and found my connecting trains. I had my route set and I had my directions set. I was good to go. The trouble was I did not account for traveling time. I totally underestimated how far long beach really was and how long it would actually take to get there.
My only frame of reference was the dinky map at the station that showed how many 'stops' there were on my route. I assumed an hour would be sufficient. I was greatly mistaken.
You see, my connecting train to my destination wasn't a subway train. I had not accounted for the fact that this train was running on the roads. And it had to stop for traffic lights. My entire journey took me 2 hours or so. Thankfully, concerts NEVER start on time. So I missed the first band , FEE, but got to enjoy the rest of it.
So there I was. In long beach arena. By myself - my friend bailed on me sadly - seated somewhere near the back because I was late watching Fee, Francesca Battistelli, Family Force 5, David Crowder Band, and Mercy Me. Yep that's right. I saw both the Crowder Band AND Mercy Me in the same concert, same night. How amazing is that.
I must say that I have seriously forgotten the energy and the joy of being in a live worship concert. I haven't had the opportunity to go mad for Christ in a long long time. The feeling of pure joy and singing at the top of my lungs because everyone else is drowning me out anyway, the sheer volume of the music blasting away... Not to mention the fact that a David Crowder worship session is ALWAYS a massive load of fun.
It brings me back to my memories of those crazy Planet Shakers concerts back home.. and the Delirious concert which was amazing too. And Chris Tomlin. Thankfully, my number of live Christian concerts has doubled thanks to this one event. It was great.
But the adventure doesn't stop there. Oh no.
I had to endeavour the train ride back. Which was even slower than the one down to long beach due to construction work on one of the stations that we were passing. Thankfully I got to the station just in time to catch the train otherwise I would've had to wait a half hour for the next one.
On the train journey back, there was a female hobo on the train. She was totally and literally crazy. She had soft toys that she would put on the seats and she would be randomly scolding people who had said nothing to her to begin with. Thankfully she gave up the offensive and stuffed her fingers in her ears to shut out the 'angry noise' of the people on the train who weren't saying anything. It was rather... strange. Thankfully she didn't share my journey all the way back to Downtown LA.
So yes. I spent 4 hours on a train to go to a 3 hour concert. It was worth it I tell you. There's lots more music to come. Spring/Summer is coming back to LA and it's time for the music festivals to break out again.
Train adventures don't stop yet. I had a whole weekend of train sitting. I had to figure out my next destination immediately the next day.
I retook my Toefl for a future plan since my old score has expired. So I made two journeys. One on Friday to figure out where this darn place was, and one more just this morning to get there and take the darn test.
It was the first time in years that I've been up so early in the morning. Why? Because I initially signed up for the test without any regard to what time it was. Lo and behold, it was an 8am test. I had to be there at 7:30. And I had a 30 minute trip there. Plus a 10 minute walk to the station. So I had to get up at 6. Eat breakfast. Shower. No wait... I didn't even shower. Change. Get there.
Stupid test is so darn easy I was in and out before some other people arrived. How cool is that. A test that normally takes people 4 hours or so took me 2. What can I say.
It's been a weekend of trains. I'm sorely behind on my practice times as of now due to all these things. I'm making the excuse that it's the first week and I'm not buried in practice yet... but I will be soon. So no more excuses. It's back to power drumming round the clock.
Till the next time we meet. EXCELSIOR!